[Wittrs] How Does Causal Reduction Entail Ontological Reduction?

  • From: Joseph Polanik <jpolanik@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: wittrsamr@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 28 Mar 2010 14:06:14 -0400

SWM wrote:

>Joseph Polanik wrote:

>>how did you decide or come to know that a causal account of the
>>origin of consciousness explains how consciousness is reduced to the
>>brain rather than explaining how consciousness emerges from the brain.

>Now you've made it a matter of word usage.

I'm clarifying what is meant by what is said. what else would you expect
on a Wittgenstein oriented list?

* * *

let me summarize some of the linguistic issues that should no longer
distract our attention from an important flaw in your case for
classifying Searle as a Cartesian dualist.

we do not yet have a causal account of consciousness; but, we expect
that scientists will eventually provide one.

you seem to be saying that having a causal explanation of consciousness
justifies saying that consciousness has been causally reduced whatever
causes it because 'causally reduced' means no more than causally
explained. if so, I agree.

you also seem to be saying that the same causal explanation that
justifies saying that consciousness has been causally reduced also
justifies saying that consciousness has emerged from whatever causes it;
provided that emergence is not taken for anything magical, miraculous or
inherently mysterious. if so, I agree.

perhaps, then we can now focus on something important to your case
against Searle. how do you justify your claim that a causal explanation
(whether considered as a reduction or as an emergence) entails an
ontological reduction?

this is important to your case because you say that Searle, having
conceeded the causal reduction of consciousness to brain, falls into
self-contradiction because he denies the ontological reduction of
consciousness to brain.

my contention is that Searle does not contradict himself.

he merely contradicts you.

your claim that causal reduction entails ontological reduction can be
symbolized, thus: CR -> OR.

Searle's position is CR & -OR.

these two positions are logical negations of each other.

we've heard Searle's defense of his position.

what is your argument in favor of your claim that causal reduction
entails ontological reduction?



Nothing Unreal is Self-Aware



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